Family of Marco Muzzo donates millions to Vaughan hospital
Marco Muzzo, right, leaves the Newmarket courthouse surrounded by family, on February 4, 2016. A sentencing hearing is scheduled today for the 29-year-old who pled guilty to driving drunk and causing a horrific crash that killed three children and their grandfather. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Christopher Katsarov
Kayla Goodfield, CP24.com
Published Thursday, August 17, 2017 4:52PM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, August 17, 2017 9:53PM EDT
A Vaughan hospital CEO is responding to questions about accepting millions of dollars from a family connected to a convicted drunk driver that killed three children and their grandfather in a 2015 crash.
The Muzzo family, along with the De Gasperis family, donated $15 million to a new hospital in Vaughan, slated to open in 2020.
Marco Muzzo, 30, was sentenced to 10 years in prison in March 2016 for impaired driving causing death and bodily harm. He is related to the donors from the Muzzo family.
Back on Sept. 27, 2015, Muzzo was behind the wheel of his Jeep Cherokee when he ran through a stop sign going twice the speed limit. He was convicted of impaired driving causing the deaths of the Neville-Lake children – Daniel, 9, Harrison, 5, Milly, 2 – and their 65-year-old grandfather Gary Neville. The Vaughan crash also left the children’s grandmother Neriza Neville with serious injuries.
At the time of the collision, a toxicologist discovered that Marco Muzzo would have had approximately three times the legal alcohol limit in his blood.
Ingrid Perry the CEO and president of Mackenzie Health Hospital, told CTV News Toronto that the matter is “very sensitive.”
“We certainly are aware of it,” she said. “We also have a responsibility here at Mackezine Health Foundation – for raising over $250 million towards our hospital.”
Perry added that the two families have a “long history of philanthropy.”
“Our relationship (with the families) goes back decades,” she said.
“We are very grateful for their generosity, which will benefit the people of Vaughan and neighbouring communities for decades to come.”
Perry said this is the largest single donation the hospital has ever received and it has been in the process for more than three years.
“We hope they (other members of the community) will follow the examples set by the De Gasperis and Muzzo families, and by all our very generous donors who have made a commitment to our new hospital,” Perry said.
According to Canadian Business Magazine, the Muzzo family is worth about $1.8 billion. Their business empire was started by Marco Muzzo’s late grandfather who founded drywall company Marel Constractors and condo development company Pemberton Group.
The De Gasperis family net worth of approximately $1.7 billion was built on their contracting company ConDrain that three brothers started a half-century ago, according to the magazine.
The new hospital is set to fully open in 2020 but it has been operating since construction began last fall.